Google Goes After Newspapers Again

Some estimate Google’s hyper-efficient search ad business has taken billions of dollars from newspapers. Well, Google’s not finished. It wants those circulars, too, and it thinks it can take another billion.

Over the next few days the company will roll out Google Circulars, search ads designed to reproduce those inserts retail brands have been dumping in the Sunday paper for decades. During a presentation at the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Mixx conference in New York, Google group product manager Jerry Dischler demonstrated the circular ads by showing the crowd an ad for Best Buy showcasing a collection of digital cameras, with current pricing and information on where to buy locally.
“This is like having the store dynamically rearrange right in front of you,” Dischler said.
The circular treatment was one of a slew of new ad products Google showcased at Mixx on Tuesday. Among the new offerings is a video search product geared for TV, movie and DVD advertisers. When clicked, Google’s page goes dark, and a video player takes over most of a user’s screen, providing Google with the closest thing it’s ever had to a homepage takeover.
Google also provided an update on its YouTube ad treatment, TrueView, which allows users to skip over ads. Google’s Randy Ng showed the audience two video ads, asking people to indicate when they’d skip each ad by a show of hands (wielding glowsticks that Google handed out earlier). A large number of attendees actually voted to watch most of the ads all the way through, helping Ng prove her point that users won’t abuse TrueView. Of course, that’s with great ads and an entire room of attendees who make their living off advertising.
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